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5 common ways to injure your shoulder at work

If you are like most of your Gastonia-area neighbors, you probably do not think much about your shoulders. After all, they have never let you down. Still, few injuries can stop you in your tracks faster than damage to one or both of your shoulders. 

According to the National Safety Council, shoulder injuries are some of the most expensive lost-time claims. In fact, a shoulder injury may cost more than $45,000 in lost work time. While many factory workers in North Carolina can pursue workers' compensation benefits, you likely want to avoid a shoulder injury altogether. Here are five ways shoulder injuries often occur on the jobsite: 

1. Repetitive motion 

If you work in a factory or production facility, you likely have one task you do over and over again. Unfortunately, though, repetitive movements may cause you to develop an injury in your shoulders, hands, wrists or arms. 

2. Tools 

While power tools often make jobs easier, they can take a toll on the human body. If you work with tools that vibrate or agitate, your shoulder may absorb much of the impact. Over time, you may experience numbness, tingling or soreness in your shoulders. 

3. Falls 

Factories can be cluttered places. They also may not be the cleanest place to work. If you slip and fall, you may land on your shoulder. Alternatively, your hands may reflexively extend to catch yourself, causing your shoulders to sustain damage. Either way, falling at the jobsite may put the health of your shoulders in jeopardy. 

4. Pushing, pulling and lifting 

You may work in a place where you regularly have to push, pull or lift heavy items. When you do, your shoulders work hard to get the job done. Even if you practice safety techniques, you may not be able to avoid a shoulder injury. 

5. Strange positions 

As you may suspect, your shoulders need room to move. If your job requires you to work in a confined space or otherwise move yourself into awkward positions, you may eventually sustain a shoulder injury. 

Even with some care, you may not be able to avoid a shoulder injury at work forever. Still, by understanding how shoulder injuries tend to occur, you can likely better plan for staying safe and healthy on the job.

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